This Name Puzzle Busy Bag is great for teaching kids to practice spelling and recognizing names. This is one of the easiest busy bag ideas to make and only requires a few materials. The name puzzle busy bag is great for kids because they can see pictures of themselves and loved ones.
I made this for my son to help him recognize the names of everyone in our family. For added support, I added pictures for everyone in the family and used a different color for each of the name puzzles. He loves puzzles so this was a perfect busy bag for him.
I used to make these name puzzles in my kindergarten classroom when I was a teacher. Since I now homeschool, I had to modify it and use our family pictures.
If you are a teacher, this would make a great literacy center for your classroom at the beginning of the year. My students always loved this name learning activity.
This busy bag uses sentence strips that I had left over from my public school teaching days, but you could just trim a piece of cardstock down to make the puzzles. Instead of printing the pictures on special paper, I just printed off my pictures onto regular printer paper.
Name Puzzle Busy Bag
- Sentence Strips (I've seen these at the Dollar Tree, Walmart, and Target, or you could get them at a school supply store. I had these left over from my teaching days. You could use strips of cardstock or construction paper, too.)
- Pictures of family members or friends
- plastic zip top bag for storage
- Laminator Sheets
Use the marker to write your child's name on the Sentence Strip. If your child is just learning their name, you could only include their name in the busy bag. I included the names of everyone in the family for our busy bag because my 4 year old is already able to spell his name. I also used a different color for each person and added a picture for each name puzzle.
Laminate the name puzzles.
Cut between the letters. You will want to make different "designs" with your scissors for each cut. For example, wavy lines, jagged lines, curved lines, etc.
Place the puzzles in a bag for storage.
When it is time to play with this busy bag, have your child put the puzzles together.
Tip: If they need help, make another strip that has their name on it and leave it intact. Allow them to use it to help them find the next letter. They can use it as a reference, or use it to match up the letters by laying the pieces on top.
Other Ideas for Puzzle Strip Busy Bags:
- Putting numbers in order
- Sight Words
- Simple sentences
For more activities involving learning names, you might like 26 Ways to Learn Names for Preschoolers.
Want more busy bag ideas? I have a giant list of all the busy bag ideas I've shared.
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